If I Grow Up
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In the Frederick Douglass Project where DeShawn lives, daily life is ruled by drugs and gang violence. Many teenagers drop out of school and join gangs, and every kid knows someone who died. Gunshots ring out on a regular basis.
DeShawn is smart enough to know he should stay in school and keep away from the gangs. But while his friends have drug money to buy fancy sneakers and big-screen TVs, DeShawn's family can barely afford food for the month. How can he stick to his principles when his family is hungry?
In this gritty novel about growing up in the inner city, award-winning author Todd Strasser opens a window into the life of a teenager struggling with right and wrong under the ever-present shadow of gangs.
Read an Excerpt
In my last book, Boot Camp, I wrote about a secret prison system for teenagers in the United States. Teens do not have to be found guilty of a crime to be sent to one of these facilities, also known as boot camps. All they have to be is under the age of eighteen and have parents or guardians who want to send them away.
There is yet another system of detention in our country that holds not thousands, but millions, of innocent people against their wills. Unlike boot camps, which are often located in remote parts of the landscape, these social and economic gulags are hidden in plain sight, often in inner cities,...see more
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- Book Cover Image (jpg): If I Grow Up
Hardcover 9781416925231(2.7 MB)
- Author Photo (jpg): Todd Strasser
Photo credit: Michael Lavine(1.9 MB)
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